Resource Links Tagged with "Social Justice"

Return the National Parks to the Tribes; The Jewels of America’s Landscape Should Belong to America’s Original Peoples.

by David Treuer | April 2021
The American story of “the Indian” is one of staggering loss. Some estimates put the original Indigenous population of what would become the contiguous United States between 5 million and 15 million at the time of first contact. By 1890, around the time America began creating national parks in earnest, roughly 250,000 Native people were still alive. In 1491, Native people controlled all of the 2.4 billion acres that would become the United States. Now we control about 56 million acres, or roughly 2 percent. And yet we remain, and some of us have stayed stubbornly near the parks, preserving our attachment to them. Grand Canyon National Park encloses much of the Havasupai Tribe and its reservation. Pipe Spring National Monument sits entirely inside the 120,000-acre Kaibab Paiute Indian Reservation, in northern Arizona. Many other parks neighbor Native communities. But while the parks may be near us, and of us, they are not ours.
TAGS: [Racial Terrorism] [2020’s] [History] [Indigenous] [Systemic Racism] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [Denial] [Social Justice] [Accountability] [Environment] [Politics] [Assumptions] [Silencing POC]

Okinawans Exhibit Artful Way of Reclaiming Indigenous Space

by Megumi Chibana | April 2021
Note: This article originally appeared in Verge 4.2 (Fall 2018), published by the University of Minnesota Press.
In 1995, the Okinawan community of Yomitan — which had been dispossessed of their lands during the Pacific War to allow for the building of a Japanese airfield — revealed their plans for the future of their village. Village leaders placed an image and a poem at the center of this new vision, an artful way of imagining indigenous space…. In 1995, the Japan-US Special Action Committee on Okinawa, or SACO, agreed on joint use of the Yomitan Airfield. Although the permission provided only for “interim use,” the repossession and use of the airfield by the village opened new space for the community. Through self-organization and the reconfiguration of space, the village successfully refuted the military use of indigenous space and regenerated the landscape as a democratic hub for deliberating alternative futures. This is when the community developed and detailed the Phoenix Plan, as a new vision to imagine indigenous space.
TAGS: [Strategies] [2020’s] [Art & Culture] [History] [Politics][Indigenous] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [Reparations] [Social Justice]

You’re Already on Stolen Land. You Might as Well Pay Rent.

by Sena Crow | November 2019
And yes, if you’re wondering: this post is for white settlers. f you’re not already actively working to unlearn colonizing habits and unconditionally support Indigenous people, now is the perfect time to start. It’s November, and that means it’s Native History Month. Native History Month urges us to ask how we can better recognize, support, and protect Indigenous communities.First, ask yourself this question every day: Whose land am I living on? The second question to ask yourself: What do I own on this land? And the third: What people have lost from what I have gained?
TAGS: [Individual Change] [2010’s] [Indigenous] [Systemic Racism] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [History] [Social Justice] [Accountability]

Performative Activism Is the New ‘Color-Blind’ Band-Aid for White Fragility; White People Embracing Hashtags Won’t Help Us Destroy Anti-Black Racism. Here’s Why.

by Maia Niguel Hoskin, Ph.D. | June 2020
Because Whites are the nonracialized majority, they live in an insulated environment of racial protection and comfort, which makes them unable to tolerate racial stress. Whiteness scholar Robin DiAngelo refers to this as White fragility and says this about it: Once White people are confronted with racial stress, it triggers various defensive responses in them, such as anger, guilt, silence, outward displays of emotion, defensiveness, and shutting down. Some argue that color-blindness has been used as a way for Whites to accommodate their racial fragility and ease their guilt. Feelings of shame and defensiveness associated with racial injustice can be minimized if its existence is denied. Like color-blindness, performative activism is manipulative and maintains systems of racial privilege by Whites centering their desire to seek comfort over addressing racial injustice.
TAGS: [Assumptions] [2020’s] [Myths] [White Fragility/Tears] [“All Lives Matter”] [White Defensiveness] [White Blindness] [White Supremacy] [Social Justice] [Policing] [Black Lives Matter] [History] [Colorblindness] [Tips-Dos/Don’ts] [Anti-Racism]

Nulhegan Abenaki Post Statement on Abenaki Ethnocide

Posted on the website of the Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk-Abenaki Nation | January 2021
The Indigenous Abenaki people of the Northeast have, for generations, been subjected to both genocidal attacks (killing of people) and ethnocidal attacks (killing of culture) by colonial settlers and their descendants. In the colonial era, these threats took the form of murderous attacks on families and villages in war-time. In the modern era, these threats have included eugenic sterilization [http://www.uvm.edu/~lkaelber/eugenics/VT/VT.html], forced separations of children and families, misrepresentations of history, and other attacks that the United Nations classifies as “ethnocide.” By definition, ethnocide includes both a “mental element” – “the intent to destroy” – and a “physical element” – when perpetrators deliberately take actions to cause “serious bodily or mental harm” [https://www.un.org/en/genocideprevention/genocide.shtml].
TAGS: [Strategies] [2020’s] [Indigenous] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [Systemic Racism] [Silencing POC] [Racial Terrorism] [History] [Social Justice]

158 Resources to Understand Racism in America

by Meilan Solly | June 2020
Amid escalating clashes between protesters and police, discussing race—from the inequity embedded in American institutions to the United States’ long, painful history of anti-black violence—is an essential step in sparking meaningful societal change. To support those struggling to begin these difficult conversations, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture recently launched a “Talking About Race” portal featuring “tools and guidance” for educators, parents, caregivers and other people committed to equity. “Talking About Race” joins a vast trove of resources from the Smithsonian Institution dedicated to understanding what Bunch describes as America’s “tortured racial past.” From Smithsonian magazine articles on slavery’s Trail of Tears and the disturbing resilience of scientific racism to the National Museum of American History’s collection of Black History Month resources for educators and a Sidedoor podcast on the Tulsa Race Massacre, these 158 resources are designed to foster an equal society, encourage commitment to unbiased choices and promote antiracism in all aspects of life. Listings are bolded and organized by category.
TAGS: [Collective Action] [2020’s] [Systemic Racism] [Anti-Racism] [Policing] [Teachers] [History] [Intersectionality] [Slavery] [Racial Terrorism] [Black Lives Matter] [Civil War] [Politics] [Social Justice] [Racial Covenants] [Housing] [Employment] [Economics] [Silencing POC] [Health Disparities] [Prison System] [Implicit Bias] [Indigenous] [Police Shootings] [Latino/a] [White Supremacy] [White Culture]

The Aggressive Fragility of ‘I’m Not Racist: and ‘Not All White People’

by Jeremy Helligar | March 2021
Dear Sharon Osbourne, Piers Morgan, and Becky from ‘The Real World Homecoming’: Please. Stop. People can be so exhausting. Correction: Some people can be so exhausting. Although exceptions are generally implied when we generalize, for some people, nothing can be left to implication — especially if the subject is racism. I see evidence of this in the comments section of nearly every article I read or write about race. There are always a few in the audience, usually White, who take offense because they presume that when Black people write about the racism White people inflict on them, unless “White people” is qualified with “some,” they are being lumped in with the main offenders. Apparently, for them, the true horror of racism isn’t racism itself but being accused of it due to association.
TAGS: [Individual Change] [2020’s] [Systemic Racism] [History] [Social Justice] [White Fragility/Tears] [White Supremacy] [Tips-Dos/Don’ts] [Microaggressions] [White Privilege] [Economics]

10 Ways Your Social Justice Work Might Be Inaccessible and Elitist (And Why That’s a Problem)

by Hari Ziyad | October 2020
It’s comforting not to have to constantly explain yourself and your work. It’s beautiful to learn from and be around folks who understand ideas like microaggressions, gaslighting, white fragility, and all the other odd terms that describe the myriad, important, and insidious ways oppression operates. But some of those ways are too insidious to recognize even within these spaces. Some are, in fact, unique to these spaces. Some oppressions are fostered by the very things supposedly set up to help justice spaces thrive. Inadvertently, they create power structures mirroring those they’re working to address. Being in these spaces for a while now, I’ve noticed that I’ve been increasingly receiving feedback that my writing is inaccessible. I dismissed a lot of this critique on the basis that I am, at my core, a big idea and theory girl. My way of communicating isn’t supposed to be meant for everyone. But that became a more difficult excuse to embrace once I noticed these concerns coming even from those who generally embrace theoreticals.
TAGS: [Individual Change] [2020’s] [Microaggressions] [White Fragility/Tears] [Tips-Dos/Don’ts] [Social Justice] [Accountability] [Intersectionality] [White Privilege] [Definitions] [Black Lives Matter] [Indigenous] [Economics]

How Black People Can Be Strong Allies to Asian Americans Right Now

by Char Adams | March 2021
“A big part of how to be allies in this moment is advocating with us,” said Alvina Wong, of the Asian Pacific Environmental Network. Thousands of hate incidents against Asian people across the country have been documented by advocacy groups in the last year, ranging in severity from spitting to the unprovoked push of an 84-year-old Thai American man in San Francisco who died of his injuries a few days later. These incidents have prompted the renewal of conversations about security in Asian American neighborhoods, privilege, solidarity and even anti-Blackness in response to the violence. That last element, activists say, devalues the decades of coalition building and allyship between Asian American and Black communities. But Russell Jeung, a professor of Asian American studies at San Francisco State University and co-founder of Stop AAPI Hate, notes that efforts to create a racial wedge between such groups only empowers the white supremacy that makes racist violence possible.
TAGS: [Collective Action] [2020’s] [Asian] [Advocacy] [White Supremacy] [Myths] [Tips-Dos/Don’ts] [Policing] [Social Justice] [Anti-Racism] [Accountability] [Bystander Intervention]

The Crimson Klan

by Simon J. Levien | March 2021
When J. Max Bond Jr. ’55 entered Harvard at the age of 16, he was among 15 Black students in his class, most of whom lived in the north corner of Harvard Yard. As his freshman spring semester began, two other Harvard freshmen erected a wooden cross facing that corner of the Yard, formed by Stoughton and Holworthy Halls. And around midnight on Feb. 5, 1952, the students lit the cross on fire… Post-Harvard, Bond became one of a few prominent Black architects in the 20th century. After his death in 2009, his widow, Jean Carey Bond, released an 11-page retelling of his life. In it, Jean reveals that the University threatened Bond or any Black student with suspension should they go to the media with the cross burning. Bond, who graduated Phi Beta Kappa and finished undergrad in three years, was never suspended.
TAGS: [Racial Terrorism] [2020’s] [Systemic Racism] [Silencing POC] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [White Defensiveness] [History] [Slavery] [Denial] [Social Justice]

How Native Americans Were Vaccinated Against Smallpox, Then Pushed Off Their Land; Nearly Two Centuries Later, Many Tribes Remain Suspicious of the Drive to Get Them Vaccinated Against the Coronavirus

by Dana Hedgpeth | March 2021
More than 180 years ago, the federal government launched the largest effort of its kind in the United States to vaccinate Native Americans against the deadly disease of smallpox… In 1832, Congress passed legislation — the Indian Vaccination Act — that allowed the federal government to use about $17,000 to hire doctors to vaccinate Native Americans who were living near White frontier settlements. Many White settlers feared that Indians would spread the disease to them. “It wasn’t in the interest of Indian people,” said Pecos, who is also co-director of the Leadership Institute at the Santa Fe Indian School. “It was a way of vaccinating them to move them so White Americans could move them into Western lands.”
TAGS: [Strategies] [2020’s] [Indigenous] [Health Disparities] [Politics] [Social Justice] [Systemic Racism] [Racial Terrorism] [Definitions] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [Silencing POC] [History]

‘Shut Down DAPL’: Lakota Youth Bring Black Snake to Biden’s Front Door

by Acee Agoyo | April 2021
Five years since the fight against the Dakota Access Pipeline became a worldwide movement, and four years after tribes and their allies took to the streets in protest, Lakota youth returned to the nation’s capital to once again hold the federal government to its trust and treaty responsibilities. Youth from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe and the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe traveled over 1,500 miles from their communities to make a simple yet pointed request. Shut down the Dakota Access Pipeline, which the federal courts have repeatedly determined was approved under a process that violated the law.
TAGS: [Collective Action] [2020’s] [Indigenous] [POC Climate Action] [Environment] [Politics] [Social Justice] [Justice System] [Systemic Racism] [Advocacy] [Role Model]

The Decline of Black Business; and What it Means for American Democracy by Brian S. Feldman | May 2017 The last thirty years also have brought the wholesale collapse of black-owned independent businesses and financial institutions that once anchored black communities across the country. In 1985, sixty black-owned banks were providing financial services to their communities; today, just twenty-three remain. In eleven states that headquartered black-owned banks in 1994, not a single one is still in business. Of the fifty black-owned insurance companies that operated during the 1980s, today just two remain. Over the same period, tens of thousands of black-owned retail establishments and local service companies also have disappeared, having gone out of business or been acquired by larger companies. Reflecting these developments, working-age black Americans have become far less likely to be their own boss than in the 1990s. TAGS: [Strategies] [2010’s] [Art & Culture] [Justice System] [History] [Economics] [Systemic Racism] [Black Lives Matter] [Social Justice] [Politics] [Slavery] [Civil War] [White Supremacy] [White Privilege] [Racial Covenants] [Racial Terrorism]

by Brian S. Feldman | May 2017
The last thirty years also have brought the wholesale collapse of black-owned independent businesses and financial institutions that once anchored black communities across the country. In 1985, sixty black-owned banks were providing financial services to their communities; today, just twenty-three remain. In eleven states that headquartered black-owned banks in 1994, not a single one is still in business. Of the fifty black-owned insurance companies that operated during the 1980s, today just two remain. Over the same period, tens of thousands of black-owned retail establishments and local service companies also have disappeared, having gone out of business or been acquired by larger companies. Reflecting these developments, working-age black Americans have become far less likely to be their own boss than in the 1990s.
TAGS: [Strategies] [2010’s] [Art & Culture] [Justice System] [History] [Economics] [Systemic Racism] [Black Lives Matter] [Social Justice] [Politics] [Slavery] [Civil War] [White Supremacy] [White Privilege] [Racial Covenants] [Racial Terrorism]

For White Allies on Black History and Slavery in the U.S.

(posted) by Paula M. Fitzgibbons | Date Unknown
Black history month is about so much more than slavery, but in the U.S., Black history and slavery are inseparable. And sadly, many of us still don’t have an adequate education on the topic. I’m always flabbergasted when I hear people say that Black Americans need to “get past” slavery. “It wasn’t us,” they say. “That happened hundreds of years ago. Get over it already.” It’s clear to me that these people don’t fully grasp the horror of American slavery, how long it lasted, and what happened after it. They also don’t seem to understand how severe trauma works.
TAGS: [Collective Action] [Slavery] [Black Lives Matter] [Systemic Racism] [White Fragility/Tears] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [White Defensiveness] [White Blindness] [Social Justice] [Racial Terrorism] [Silencing POC] [History] [Denial]

Peabody Museum Apologizes For Practices Around Native American Cultural Objects, Announces Policy Changes

by Oliver L. Riskin-Kutz | March 2021
Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology administrators apologized for the “pain” the museum caused by its refusal to voluntarily return certain funerary objects to Native American tribes and pledged to reverse the policy in response to a letter from the Association on American Indian Affairs last month criticizing the museum. In February, the Association sent a letter to University President Lawrence S. Bacow accusing Harvard of legal and moral violations in the Museum’s practices regarding its collections of Native American human remains and cultural objects. In the letter, the nonprofit said Harvard’s practices are in violation of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.
TAGS: [Strategies] [2020’s] [Indigenous] [Art & Culture] [Systemic Racism] [White Culture] [Social Justice]

Carlisle Residents Urge Council ‘to Talk about the Scars’ before Solving Racial Equity

by Sue Gleiter | January 2021
Among the issues touched upon during the more than 2 1/2-hour meeting were affordable housing, the criminal justice system and schools, as well as the possibility of creating a Truth and Reconciliation Commission. “This is a first step. This is just opening the door to the conversation and it needs to be more than conversation and we need to actually do something,” said Deb Fulham-Winston, council member. “We need to understand it and we need to give people the time and the space to be able to bring their concerns to light,” she said.
TAGS: [Collective Action] [2020’s] [Social Justice] [Housing] [Justice System] [Teachers] [Anti-Racism] [Economics] [Advocacy] [Implicit Racism] [Policing]

Why History Matters: the Legacy of Slavery

by David Rosen | January 2021
When recalling Lincoln, many New Yorkers may remember the famous speech he gave at Cooper Institute (aka Cooper Union) in February 1860 calling to limit the extension – but not the end – of slavery.  It was a critical campaign speech that helped him secure the Republican Party nomination for President.  In November, he was elected, and, in December, South Carolina was the first state to secede from the Union.
Unfortunately, few American – and likely very few New Yorkers – will recall that Lincoln’s speech was strongly attacked by city business leaders and the Democratic Party, many assailing him with the racist slogan, “Black Republican.” More important, Lincoln’s election sparked a strong movement in the city, led by Mayor Fernando Wood, to join the South and secede from the Union. This is one of the many important historical stories retold in an informative new book by Jonathan Daniel Wells, The Kidnapping Club: Wall Street, Slavery and Resistance on the Eve of the Civil War (Bold Type Books). Slavery was formally abolished in New York State in 1827, but the slave trade lived on in the city until the Civil War. Wells argues that the slave trade persisted in New York City in the decades before the Civil War because it was the capital of the Southern slave economy.
TAGS: [Strategies] [2020’s] [History] [Civil War] [Slavery] [Politics] [Social Justice] [Policing] [Black Lives Matter] [Justice System] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [Silencing POC] [Racial Terrorism] [Social Justice]

Retracing Slavery’s Trail of Tears; America’s Forgotten Migration – the Journeys of a Million African-Americans from the Tobacco South to the Cotton South

by Edward Ball | November 2015
“My grandfather went to the folks who had owned our family and asked, ‘Do you have any documentation about our history during the slave days? We would like to see it, if possible.’ The man at the door, who I have to assume was from the slaveholding side, said, ‘Sure, we’ll give it to you.’ When Delores McQuinn was growing up, her father told her a story about a search for the family’s roots. He said his own father knew the name of the people who had enslaved their family in Virginia, knew where they lived—in the same house and on the same land—in Hanover County, among the rumpled hills north of Richmond.“The man went into his house and came back out with some papers in his hands. Now, whether the papers were trivial or actual plantation records, who knows? But he stood in the door, in front of my grandfather, and lit a match to the papers. ‘You want your history?’ he said. ‘Here it is.’ Watching the things burn. ‘Take the ashes and get off my land.’ “The intent was to keep that history buried,” McQuinn says today. “And I think something like that has happened over and again, symbolically.”
TAGS: [Racial Terrorism] [2010’s] [History] [Slavery] [Silencing POC] [Confederate Monuments] [Politics] [Black Lives Matter] [Definitions] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [Social Justice] [Civil War] [Accountability]

Former Falmouth Students Question Racial Disparity in Discipline

by Jessica Hill | February 2021
When freshman Adaesia O’Garro was accused of threatening another student at Falmouth High School in 2018, she was criminally charged and suspended for 10 months while her case made its way through the long court process. The charges, which included assault and battery, larceny and distributing material of a child in the nude, were later dismissed by Judge James J. Torney Jr., according to court records O’Garro shared with the Times. But O’Garro, who is Black, missed her sophomore year and, now a senior, continues to deal with the aftermath as she works to graduate in June with her class.
TAGS: [Assumptions] [2020’s] [Systemic Racism] [Black Lives Matter] [White Privilege] [White Culture] [White Supremacy] [Social Justice] [-ing While Black] [Denial] [Calling Police] [Accountability] [Justice System]

This Emmett Till Memorial Was Vandalized Again. And Again. And Again. Now, It’s Bulletproof.

by Kayla Epstein | October 2019
The cars came one by one, down a gravel road and through a cotton field, to the edge of the Tallahatchie River and the spot where, 64 years ago, historians believe Emmett Till’s lifeless body was pulled from the river. The vehicles carried Till’s relatives, including cousin the Rev. Wheeler Parker, community leaders and advocates dedicated to keeping his memory alive. The group had gathered on Saturday at noon in the remote spot near Glendora, Miss., to dedicate yet another memorial to Till. And this time, it was bulletproof. It took 50 years to get the first memorial to Till erected in Tallahatchie County, the site of the lynching that helped spark the civil rights movement. But then an entirely new battle began: keeping the tribute intact.
TAGS:  [Racial Terrorism]  [2010’s]  [History]  [Systemic Racism]  [White Supremacy]  [White Culture]   [Social Justice]  [Black Lives Matter]  [White Privilege]  [White Defensiveness]  

Reparations Matter: Accountability Begins with Understanding

by Douglas Haynes | February 2021
Last month’s violent insurrection at the US Capitol overshadowed the re-introduction of H.R. 40 on January 4, 2021. Introduced by Rep. Shelia Jackson Lee  (D-Texas), this bill provides for funding for a commission to study and develop reparation proposals for African Americans. The two events could not be more different. One was a violent assault on the US Congress by extremists. The other reflected the deliberate law-making process of a modern democracy. In seeking to de-certify the votes of millions of Americans, the protestors sought nothing less than the restoration of white supremacy in the slogans “Make America Great Again” or “Take Back Our Country.” By contrast, the co-sponsors of the House bill called on the federal government to finally come to terms with the costs and consequences of the legal enslavement and differential treatment of Black people in both the past and present.
TAGS: [Strategies] [2020’s] [Reparations] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [Systemic Racism] [Black Lives Matter] [Social Justice] [Definitions] [Slavery] [Politics] [History]

Ghosted by Allies: Why BIPOC Still Can’t Trust White People with Social Justice; We Always Knew Last Summer’s Allyship Was Fleeting

by Angie Franklin | February 2021
We all knew it was coming. I’d venture to say every single Black person in America not only knew it was coming but was actively waiting for it to happen. After the black square badge of anti-racism, the allyship die-off was not surprising, nor was it a new experience for us. What was new was Black Lives Matter and social justice going viral. All of a sudden people gave a fuck about us — or acted like they did — because it was trending and the perception of white people teetered on whether they showed public support for Black lives. … Few people are willing to consistently rub against the grain, bring up conversations about race with family, speak up for co-workers, step back or resign when a BIPOC person is more qualified, or question the status quo. Maybe they could do it for a week, or a few weeks, but six months later? Apparently not. The ghosted allies are those who spoke out against police brutality and murder, posted videos protesting in the streets, shed tears in their stories, followed as many Black accounts as they could find. This group was, for a moment, utterly shook by the reality of racism. But what they didn’t realize was their bewilderment — their shock — in waking up to what Black people go through every day in this country and have for hundreds of years was what added a real insult to injury.
TAGS: [Collective Action] [2020’s] [Social Justice] [Black Lives Matter] [White Fragility/Tears] [White Defensiveness] [White Privilege] [Advocacy] [White Supremacy] [Anti-Racism] [Policing] [Microaggressions] [Denial] [White Blindness] [Accountability]

A Forgotten Black Founding Father; Why I’ve Made it My Mission to Teach Others about Prince Hall

by Danielle Allen | March 2021
Many of us who live in Massachusetts know the basic outlines of this story and the early role the state played in standing against enslavement. But told in this traditional way, the story leaves out another transformative figure: Prince Hall, a free African American and a contemporary of John Adams. From his formal acquisition of freedom, in 1770, until his death, in 1807, Hall helped forge an activist Black community in Boston while elevating the cause of abolition to new prominence. Hall was the first American to publicly use the language of the Declaration of Independence for a political purpose other than justifying war against Britain. In January 1777, just six months after the promulgation of the Declaration and nearly three years before Adams drafted the state constitution, Hall submitted a petition to the Massachusetts legislature (or General Court, as it is styled) requesting emancipation, invoking the resonant phrases and founding truths of the Declaration itself.
TAGS: [Assumptions] [2020’s] [History] [Role Model] [Black Lives Matter] [Slavery] [Teachers] [Silencing POC] [-ing While Black] [Advocacy] [Systemic Racism] [Social Justice] [Civil War]

We Were the Last of the Nice Negro Girls

by Anna Deavere Smith  |  February 2021
This article is part of “Inheritance,” a project about American history and Black life.
In 1968, history found us at a small women’s college, forging our Black identity and empowering our defiance. I knew nothing about the multitude of small colleges across the U.S. that had been founded, many by religious institutions, for the specific purpose of educating white women. Nor did I know anything about “suitcase schools,” some of which had reputations as glorified finishing schools where girls were focused on meeting boys attending nearby institutions. (They were called “suitcase schools” because on Fridays the girls took off to spend the weekend with their prospective husbands.) But in 1966, as my counselor put it to my mother, many of these all-girls colleges were “looking for nice Negro girls like Anna.” My father did not like the idea. He was adamant that I attend Howard or Morgan State or some other historically Black college or university, just as he and his siblings and my older cousins had done. My mother and I made our case about “opportunity.” He became emphatic: If I went to a white women’s college, he said, I’d have no social life. This was a legitimate concern—but up to that point, my father’s strictness had severely circumscribed my “social life.” Now he was suddenly concerned about it?
TAGS: [Strategies] [2020’s] [History] [Systemic Racism] [Black Lives Matter] [-ing While Black] [White Privilege] [White Culture] [Policing] [Social Justice] [Assumptions]

How the GI Bill’s Promise Was Denied to a Million Black WWII Veterans; The Sweeping Bill Promised Prosperity to Veterans. So Why Didn’t Black Americans Benefit?

by Erin Blakemore | September 2019
When Eugene Burnett saw the neat tract houses of Levittown, New York, he knew he wanted to buy one. It was 1949, and he was ready to settle down in a larger home with his family. The newly established Long Island suburb seemed like the perfect place to begin their postwar life—one that, he hoped, would be improved with the help of the GI Bill, a piece of sweeping legislation aimed at helping World War II veterans like Burnett prosper after the war. But when he spoke with a salesman about buying the house using a GI Bill-guaranteed mortgage, the door to suburban life in Levittown slammed firmly in his face. The suburb wasn’t open to Black residents.
TAGS: [Strategies] [2010’s] [Systemic Racism] [Racial Covenants] [Black Lives Matter] [Economics] [White Privilege] [White Culture] [White Supremacy] [Denial] [Housing] [Politics] [History] [Social Justice]

The Violent History of White Supremacy Is Rarely Taught in Schools. It Should Be.

by Corey Mitchell | January 2021
Searing images from this month’s mostly white insurrection in Washington, D.C.—including a hangman’s noose on the Capitol grounds and the Confederate flag carried inside the U.S. Capitol—harken back to another era when both were tools and symbols of white supremacy across the country. But relatively few students have learned about previous sordid moments that foreshadowed this year’s efforts to instill terror and violently overturn an election such as the Wilmington Insurrection of 1898, widely thought to be the only successful coup in U.S. history, and the Tulsa Race Massacre.
TAGS: [Racial Terrorism] [2020’s] [History] [Social Justice] [Systemic Racism] [White Culture] [Slavery] [Politics] [Denial] [Silencing POC] [Teachers] [White Supremacy] [White Privilege] [White Blindness] [White Defensiveness] [Black Lives Matter]

How U.S. Backed Banks Robbed Ex-Slaves of $66 Million

by Jared Brown | Month Unknown 2016
In 1871, Congress authorized banks to provide business loans and mortgages. Paradoxically, such mortgages and loans were usually administered to whites at the expense of black depositors. Risky investments and lending patterns, coupled with cronyism and corruption at the level of upper management, slowly undermined the stability of the bank. According to Black Past, “By 1874, massive fraud among upper management and among the board of director had taken its toll on the bank. Moreover, economic instability brought upon by the Panic of 1873, coupled with the bank’s rapid expansion, proved disastrous.” The Freedmen’s Bank was officially closed on June 29, 1874. At the point of closing, 61,144 black depositors were robbed of the modern equivalent of $66 million. The failure of the bank left many black depositors and borrowers distrustful of the white banking community, especially since the Freedmen’s Bank was established and managed by white men.
TAGS: [Strategies] [2010’s] [Systemic Racism] [History] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [Slavery] [Accountability] [Social Justice] [Economics] [Denial] [Racial Covenants] [Black Lives Matter]

How to Talk to Your Kids about White Privilege

by Bridget Sharkey |  February 2021
Teaching our kids about concepts like white privilege can be daunting. It’s not a concept that even adults can always grasp, so we might balk at confronting this topic with our children. But here’s the thing: Black parents don’t have the luxury of not discussing white privilege with their children. Refusing to discuss white privilege with our children because it makes us uncomfortable is, in and of itself, a white privilege. Black parents have no choice but to educate their children about the very real existence of racism and how their skin color puts them at much greater risk for police violence, poverty, lower wages, inadequate schooling, harsher sentencing, wrongful convictions and shorter life spans.
TAGS: [Individual Change] [2020’s] [Police Shootings] [White Privilege] [Policing] [Economics] [Employment] [Health Disparities] [Systemic Racism] [Tips-Dos/Don’ts] [Assumptions] [Black Lives Matter] [-ing While Black] [Environment] [Anti-Racism] [Social Justice]

Breaking From White Solidarity

by Erin Monahan | August 2019
Several times in the last week alone I have had encounters with white women who identify as liberal who have gotten upset when I address someone in the group about the casually racist or sexist thing they said. In one instance, I gave a very gentle mention to the person who said the casually racist statement. Because we are adults and we should be able to speak plainly about these things, we moved on. Everything seemed fine. As the night went on, a casually sexist thing was said, and then another casually racist thing was said. I interrupted both times with the intention to engage in conversation about it. … I have been addressed about my racism too many times to count. There are times that I have been defensive and violent in my response to being called out. And though I feel deep regret and shame for that behavior, I am always reflecting on these situations and thinking about how I can receive information with less guilt, shame, and anger the next time. I ask myself, what do I need to heal in myself in order to respond with more reception, true humility, and less ego? It’s never comfortable to receive how I have been racist. I feel a surge of embarrassment and desperation. I want to find a way to deny it, a way to rationalize my way out of it, a way to make myself feel better. This is my whiteness centering me. I focus on my feelings instead of my impact.
TAGS: [Individual Change] [2010’s] [White Fragility/Tears] [White Culture] [Cognitive Dissonance] [White Supremacy] [White Privilege] [Social Justice] [White Defensiveness] [White Blindness] [Anti-Racism]

Hypothetical Racism: The Trauma We Feel when White Terrorists Go Home and Innocent Black People are Shot on the Spot

by Taharee Jackson | January 2021
Hi. My name is Taharee Jackson, and I am suffering from HYPOTHETICAL RACISM.
I have not slept in two nights due to hypothetical racism-induced insomnia.
Allow me to explain. … Last night, on January 6, 2021, I was glued to the television, trying to see with my own eyes if the invasion of the United States Capitol by angry, White, gun-toting terrorists was actually happening. I kept waiting to see if throngs of police officers, special forces for insurrections, and National Guard members would show up in riot gear, handle them violently, spray rubber bullets, arrest them, shoot them, or even execute them on the spot. It happened. They did not. What truly kept me awake last night was my inability to identify the emotion I was feeling as a multiracial-mixed-with-Black woman watching the storming of the U.S. Capitol unfold WITHOUT CONSEQUENCE. Or, I should say, without the SAME consequences as the Antiracism and Black Lives Matter protests we just witnessed in all 50 states and the world over.
TAGS: [Assumptions] [2020’s] [Systemic Racism] [Accountability] [Black Lives Matter] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Privilege] [Definitions] [Policing] [Indigenous] [Social Justice] [Politics] [Silencing POC] [Economics] [Denial] [Justice System] [Police Shootings] [Racial Terrorism] [History] [Anti-Racism]

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History

Appropriation / Aggression

White Privilege / Supremacy

Slave Owners Are in Your Pocket

Public Displays

Performance Art

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Dear White People

Being Allies

James, Rachel, Dragon

Reparations

Three Candles

Spiritual Foundations

Dear White People

Being Allies

James, Rachel, Dragon

Reparations

Three Candles

Spiritual Foundations

Slave Owners Are in Your Pocket

Public Displays

Performance Art

Workshops

Freedom and Justice Crier

Activist Resources

Assessment Tools

History

Appropriation / Aggression

White Privilege / Supremacy

Introduction

Wood Stack Definitions Menu

Definitions

Facts

Maps

Dear White People

Being Allies

James, Rachel, Dragon

Reparations

Three Candles

Spiritual Foundations

Slave Owners Are in Your Pocket

Public Displays

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Performance Art

Maze

Workshops

Freedom and Justice Crier

Activist Resources

Assessment Tools

History

Appropriation / Aggression

White Privilege / Supremacy

Introduction

Wood Stack Definitions Menu

Definitions

Facts

Maps